Visa Inc. has rolled out another point-of-sale fraud-fighting tool for payment card issuers already facing costly changes to block fraud at the checkout level with EMV technology.

The card network on April 11 unveiled Visa Strategy Manager, which enables issuers to identify "the riskiest transactions" and flag them for review. The tool analyzes both point-of-sale and online transactions, a Visa spokesperson says.

The new service, which builds on the existing Visa Advanced Authorization service, uses Visa's "cutting-edge, patent-pending algorithms" to help detect fraud patterns, Visa said in a press release.

The advantage of the service for issuers would be the ability to automate the process for writing fraud-detection rules and to respond better immediately to fraud incidents as they unfold, Mark Nelson, Visa head of global risk and authentication product development, said in the release.

But with point-of-sale card-fraud levels "holding pretty steady," issuers may question the need to invest further in add-on fraud-detection tools, suggests Brian Riley, senior research director with TowerGroup.

"Card fraud at checkout is relatively tightly controlled," Riley tells PaymentsSource, noting that point-of-sale card fraud in the U.S. amounts to about 5 basis points of total transaction dollar volume. A basis point is one-hundredth of a percentage point.

Moreover, issuers already are grappling with the need to begin the process of converting all credit and debit cards to the EMV standard by 2015, Riley notes.

Visa last year established liability-shift deadlines for card issuers and merchants to adopt chip-enabled cards, which are designed to block counterfeit card fraud (see link).

MasterCard followed this year with similar incentives (see story).

"While the card networks are forcing EMV on issuers and merchants, it gets to be hard for issuers to justify spending more on additional services when the reality is that card-not-present fraud is rising, and there are no sure solutions for issuers to battle it," Riley says.

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